Even for patients receiving complex, intensive medical care for serious
and life-threatening illness, family caregiving is typically at the core of
what sustains patients at the end of life. The amorphous relationship between
physicians and the families of patients at the end of life presents both challenges
and opportunities for which physicians may be unprepared. Families play important
roles in the practical and emotional aspects of patient care and in decision
making at the end of life. At the same time, family members may carry significant
burdens as a result of their work. Through the perspectives of the wife, daughter,
and home care nurse of a patient who died from pancreatic cancer, we illustrate
the range of family caregiver experiences and suggest potentially helpful
physician interventions. We describe 5 burdens of family caregiving (time
and logistics, physical tasks, financial costs, emotional burdens and mental
health risks, and physical health risks) and review the responsibilities of
physicians to family caregivers. Based on available evidence, we identify
5 areas of opportunity for physicians to be of service to family members caring
for patients at the end of life, including promoting excellent communication
with family, encouraging appropriate advance care planning and decision making,
supporting home care, demonstrating empathy for family emotions and relationships,
and attending to family grief and bereavement. In caring well for family caregivers
at the end of life, physicians may not only improve the experiences of patients
and family but also find greater sustenance and meaning in their own work.
Register and get free email Table of Contents alerts, saved searches, PowerPoint downloads, CME quizzes, and more
Subscribe for full-text access to content from 1998 forward and a host of useful features
Activate your current subscription (AMA members and current subscribers)
Purchase Online Access to this article for 24 hours
Country-Specific Mortality and Growth Failure in Infancy and Yound Children and
Association With Material Stature
Use interactive graphics and maps to view and sort country-specific infant and early
dhildhood mortality and growth failure data and their association with maternal
Thank you for submitting a comment on this article. It will be reviewed by JAMA editors. You will be notified when your comment has been published. Comments should not exceed 500 words of text and 10 references.
Do not submit personal medical questions or information that could identify a specific patient, questions about a particular case, or general inquiries to an author. Only content that has not been published, posted, or submitted elsewhere should be submitted. By submitting this Comment, you and any coauthors transfer copyright to the journal if your Comment is posted.
* = Required Field
Disclosure of Any Conflicts of Interest*
Indicate all relevant conflicts of interest of each author below, including all relevant financial interests, activities, and relationships within the past 3 years including, but not limited to, employment, affiliation, grants or funding, consultancies, honoraria or payment, speakers’ bureaus, stock ownership or options, expert testimony, royalties, donation of medical equipment, or patents planned, pending, or issued. If all authors have none, check "No potential conflicts or relevant financial interests" in the box below. Please also indicate any funding received in support of this work. The information will be posted with your response.
Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.
Download citation file:
Web of Science® Times Cited: 120
Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.
More Listings atJAMACareerCenter.com >
and access these and other features:
Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a link to reset your password.
Enter your username and email address. We'll send instructions on how to reset your password to the email address we have on record.
Athens and Shibboleth are access management services that provide single sign-on to protected resources. They replace the multiple user names and passwords necessary to access subscription-based content with a single user name and password that can be entered once per session. It operates independently of a user's location or IP address. If your institution uses Athens or Shibboleth authentication, please contact your site administrator to receive your user name and password.